Early Cinema History Online was created by Derek Long, a Doctoral Candidate in Film at the University of Wisconsin - Madison, as part of his dissertation research on distribution in the earliest years of the Hollywood Studio System.
The initial dataset you see here is based on the work of many scholars, starting with Einar Lauritzen and Gunnar Lundquist, who compiled much of the data for their famous filmography, The American Film-Index. This print filmography was later converted to digital form by Paul Spehr and Susan Dalton, with the aid of Larry Karr, for American Film Personnel and Company Credits, 1908-1920 (McFarland, 1996).
Special credit goes to Spehr, who kindly shared a text document with the 35,000 records contained here, allowing Long to convert them to XML for inclusion in ECHO. Other special thanks go to Eric Hoyt, whose leadership on a grant project allowed this site to become a reality, and Michael Trevis, who aided with its technical implementation.
ECHO is still under development, and not all the planned functionality is in place yet. However, feel free to create a profile if you wish to contribute to the site or comment on individual records, and look for the "suggest a correction" link at the bottom of each record if you see errors. You may also add new filmographic records if they don't already exist in the database. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions or comments. Thanks for visiting!